SWA teams with Volvo to boost electrification across wholesale

The Scottish Wholesale Association has joined forces with Volvo Trucks to accelerate use of electric vehicles in wholesale

The partnership is part of a current trial to boost uptake and identify, highlight and eliminate barriers to low-carbon transport solutions in Scotland’s wholesale industry and the wider food and drink sector.

JW Filshill and other SWA members are participating in the trial which feature Volvo’s electric 19t curtainsider truck with rear tail lift. Filshill will be testing the truck for two weeks to explore the feasibility of using it in their business in the future.

Ylva Haglund, SWA head of sustainability and engagement, said: “We are committed to supporting our members on their journey to a more environmentally sustainable future as we accelerate the transition to net zero and progress towards a circular economy.

“Our aim is to inspire and facilitate action and increase awareness of the ways in which our members can move towards fleet decarbonisation and a further seven SWA members have already signed up to participate in the trial.

“We are delighted to be collaborating with Volvo, one of the world’s largest and best-known truck brands, whose knowledge and expertise in electric trucks will be hugely beneficial to SWA members and the wider food and drink sector as we work together to find the best solutions.”

Garry Whitelock, truck sales director for North and Scotland at Volvo Trucks, said: “We’ve been working with SWA for some time now and in March we partnered with the association to hold an Electric Vehicle Experience event to offer members detailed insight into the electric vehicle and infrastructure market.

“This provided participants with an opportunity to drive one of the UK’s first all-electric HGVs and also provide access to Volvo engineers who were able to answer questions about EV technology.”

Keith Geddes, chief financial and operating officer at JW Filshill, said the wholesaler was keen to explore all possibilities as it ramps up its commitment to sustainability and continues its drive to produce cleaner emissions.

“We’re very pleased to be working with the SWA and Volvo in this vehicle trial and hope it encourages other wholesalers to do the same,” said Mr Geddes. “The industry cannot make sweeping changes overnight and there are cost implications to consider but we all have a duty to engage and look to the future – this is exactly the type of activity that can help us on our journey.”

Last year, the SWA launched its industry-leading Decarbonisation of the Wholesale Sector project as part of ambitious plans to decarbonise the wholesale food supply chain and achieve net-zero emissions by 2045, or earlier.

electric vehicle JW Filshill Keith Geddes Scottish Wholesale Association Volvo Ylva Haglund